Glasgow Warriors head coach Franco Smith believes the less experienced members of his squad are ready for more responsibility after earning a gritty URC victory away to Benetton.

Although the Six Nations is in a fallow week, almost all of Glasgow’s Scotland stars were unavailable for selection, while a bulging injury list further complicated matters.

But a youthful Glasgow side ran out 19-9 winners at the Stadio Monigo, becoming the first team in a year to beat Benetton on their own turf.

READ MORE: Five things we learned from Glasgow's win over Benetton

“I think the character of the group is important. We came here with a lot of players not available for selection due to international duty, I know they also have a lot out,” Smith said.

“I do feel our young guys stepped up tonight, we want to develop a great squad and make a good team and the young guys are taking their first and second opportunities; Gregor Hiddleston, Euan Ferrie, Nathan McBeth, there are a bunch of players who have put their hands up for more responsibility and that is going to be another part of the success of tonight’s game.”

The victory provisionally put Glasgow top of the URC table and created an eight-point gap between them and fellow playoff hopefuls Benetton in the standings.

It was achieved with a pragmatic game plan based on frequent kicks to pin the Italian side in their own territory and force errors, which proved a success for all three tries on the night despite a fightback from the Italians in the second half.

Scotland Rugby News: Jamie Dobie kicks clear for Glasgow WarriorsJamie Dobie kicks clear for Glasgow Warriors (Image: Shutterstock)

“Very few people will know I was part of the reason we tried to make the Stadio Monigo a very difficult place to come and win,” said former Italy and Benetton coach Smith.

“I knew it was going to be tough tonight, they’ve shown it all season, they don’t lose here.

“We had to come with a specific plan, and the plan for most of the game was mixing it very well. The fact that we could win without the ball tonight was very important, so there are a lot of positives to take home.”